“Memento Mori,” is Latin and means: “remember the dead.” This used to be an ethic in many societies of old. Some cultures would keep a skull on their desks to carry this memory of death. They saw the importance of remembering death in everything. In modern society, we often forget there’s death around us all the time. We eat meat, but how many of us have butchered our own cows, pigs, or chickens. We often act like death will not come for us.
We see death in nature all the time. For example, each day is born with a sunrise and dies with a sunset. Leaves give way to death in fall, as new ones emerge in spring. We see it when a cat hunts a mouse or a bird hunts a worm. We all must face our own mortality. Just as our lives will end, so too will come the end of all our relationships on this earthly plane of existence.
When this understanding first occurred to me, I felt a relief. It makes life easier. When we know we are going to die, all we have to do is focus on how we want to live until we die. This dispels the false belief, that we may hold in our minds, that maybe we will live forever on earth and maybe our love will be eternal. The truth is that the relationship, as we’ve known it, will come to its end.
When we embrace the inevitability of the end in our relationships, it brings clarity and helps us appreciate them while they last. We often don’t face the reality of the end of our relationships on this earthly plane. We want to pretend, in a kind of happily-ever-after fantasy, that there is no end. However, there is no happily-ever-after on this earthly plane of existence. If you are in a romantic relationship, or really any relationship on this earthly plane, it will end in one of the following six possible ways:
1. You will end it because it no longer serves you. (You decide you no longer want to relate with this person and therefore it’s over.)
2. Your partner will end it because it no longer serves them. (They decide they no longer want to relate with you and therefore it is over.)
3. You will mutually agree that it’s over and end it together. (You decide together that the relationship is over.)
4. You will die and it will end. (As far as the relationship on the earthly plane goes, it’s over.)
5. Your partner will die and it will end. (Again, when they die this form of the relationship will end.)
6. You will die together and it will end. (In the rare occasion that you both die at the same time, or in the same place at the same time, your relationship on this earthly plane shall also pass away.)
There’s something strangely comforting in knowing these six ways a relationship will end. It dispels the ungrounded, fairytale, never-ending fantasy with a hard truth of impermanence. All things on this earthly plane come and go. When we hold on tightly to anything, we can get caught in the illusion that it will last forever. Even still, our Spirit is immortal. This is why we sometimes get wrapped up in the false sense that we will live forever or the relationship will last forever.
However, like our immortal spirit, our love is eternal and you will live forever – just not in the form you are currently in. This earthly form of your love for another person will end when you die or they die. However, this is not the end of the love. Your love will continue in another form on the other side of the veil, so nothing is truly over. While the relationship, as with all things, will pass away before the seas of time, what is truly real shall last forever. This concept came out of my second book, Unconditional Eternal Love: A Guide to Love Everyone.
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